In your opinion, Suhr vs Fender Strats?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by NickoO, Feb 19, 2020.

  1. Husky

    Husky Gold Supporting Member

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    That does nothing for the 3 positions that will be used most of the time. Sure RWRP (was not used in the 50's, not until 87') works for two positions and if you want to play Dire Straits all day that is fine, look no further.
     
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  2. trap

    trap Supporting Member

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    Ha! I’ve been playing a Tyler for over five years now and have had zero comments on the headstock from anyone. Musician or non musician. And I like it!!
     
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  3. Husky

    Husky Gold Supporting Member

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    I've never heard of Surh, lucky guy.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2020
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  4. frankencat

    frankencat Guitarded Supporting Member

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    Yeah Jonh Surh. You must have heard of him somewhere. ;)
     
  5. PeterG

    PeterG Member

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    If there is one reason to buy Suhr, it's the customer service. They define "above and beyond". I have been on the receiving end and honestly, nobody does what Suhr CS does. It's utopia, it's like living in another dimension.
     
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  6. CaliCaveMan

    CaliCaveMan Silver Supporting Member

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    So true...!!
     
  7. eigentone

    eigentone Supporting Member

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    RWRP was used as early as the 1950s by Fender. Just not on Strats.

    Let's rewind to the origin of this conversation:
    Here we are discussing approaches to hum/noise-cancellation which are not necessarily limited to Strats. And that appears to be where you and I diverge. I was referring to Fender's use of RWRP in the 1950s. How was Fender employing RWRP way back then? A few popular examples (which you are presumably already aware of) -- correct me if I am wrong:
    • 1957 - Precision Bass (split single)
    • 1958 - Jazzmaster
    • 1960 - Jazz Bass
    • 1962 - Jaguar
    You mentioning '87 presumably refers specifically to production Fender Strats coming stock with RWRP sets and 5 way switches. A simple misunderstanding in context of the scope of my statement. No big deal.

    Fender has gotten a ton of mileage out of RWRP and its application has expanded over the decades. And many people are content with the set of pros and cons RWRP offers. Other people might prefer SSCII - and it's good there are alternatives because people's needs/priorities/preferences/ears are different. And there have been a ton of products which are alternatives to RWRP over the years. And I have spent thousands on various approaches to hum and noise cancelling over the years for guitar and bass. There is no perfect solution. But in 2020 I (and many others) still consider RWRP to be one of the best and most effective solutions available. Its impact on tone is minimal -- it sounds like single coil pickups should sound. No batteries are required. There are minimal points of failure. Its compatibility with other parts is quite high (eg pickup substitutions are usually easy.) It is cheap. It is very effective at cancelling hum and noise, especially when the pickups are like kind and wind. Nothing proprietary. It does not fundamentally change the design or (significantly) complicate pickup production or assembly. Of course, like every approach to noiseless pickups and noise cancelling, there are downsides. I don't like noise but I have little enough of it that I do use a solo SC pickup frequently. If the noise is down at the level of everything else (eg amp and stomps), then it's acceptable to me. People that play with tons of gain don't get by as easily. Regardless of my pickup selector setting, I never wind up playing or sounding like Dire Straits. Talented group but…
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
  8. Vic Interceptor

    Vic Interceptor Member

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    I've posted my thoughts on this several times on this board, to which all the snobs of course say I'm crazy.. but I'm not. I promise you.

    A local guitar shop sells Suhr. They had 3 distinct models, brand new, hanging there one day I went in to get some work done on a guitar of mine (fret job). I was so excited to see these legendary be all end all super Strats in person! There was no one in the store so I was allowed to play all 3 at my leisure. Guess what? They were so boring, average and nothing special both the salesman (shop mgr) and myself discussed we shared the same opinion. We could NOT figure out what the big deal was about these things?!?

    I have currently or have in the past owned vintage, CS, AVRI, USA, MIM and CV Strats. The Suhr was on par with the MIM as is.. I'm sure if the guards were removed sure the Suhr has better electronics and wiring. BUT, it's also $2000+ more. I can replace all those parts for about $20. Tonally, the Suhr pickups were about as white bread as could be... and this was in Victoria and Fender amps, so it wasn't like I was plugged in a Crate or Line 6.

    And as the final nail in the coffin, Suhr's have the ugliest headstock of all time.

    If you MUST spend that much money, I'd check out a Silver Sky or have someone with some skill screw together a Warmoth build. (probably 75% of TGP readers can handle that task).

    That's my honest, had them in my actual hands, real world review and opinion.
     
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  9. CaliCaveMan

    CaliCaveMan Silver Supporting Member

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    I had the opposite experience 5 years ago. I tried Fender (over the years more than plenty), Anderson, and Suhr, playing multiple models of each in a sound booth with a Mark V.

    That was the day I became a Suhr fan and haven’t looked back.

    Any of the guitars would have worked, but I preferred the Suhrs over all of them. I’ve also said this before and the one Suhr I tried that day that wasn’t to my taste was the modern satin with a floyd. Totally doable, but I wasn’t looking for a guitar like that one anyway.

    All good man, people hype stuff all the time because they own it. I’m guilty as much as the next person of hyping Suhr. I’m a big fan and I think John is a pretty amazing guy. His son Kevin is also following in his Dads footsteps and that’s just awesome.

    As far as head stocks, the haters are always out there. I actually don’t have any issues with the head stock, but they make the hybrid too which you can order. People who don’t like the regular head stock either don’t know about or never mention the hybrid option.

    I’m to the point now where I think the ball end Fender logo looks foreign and not pleasing. Doesn’t stop me from playing my P bass though.

    I submit to the truth in numbers idea about things in the gear world. Suhr has no problem staying in business with orders coming in and pros all over use Suhr gear for a reason.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
  10. 808

    808 Member

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    The older I get, the more I dislike these generalized comparisons. I have played tons of guitars over the last couple years and when it comes to finding a special guitar and not just a good one; it doesn't matter that much what name is on the headstock. What matters is that it feels good, sounds good, and inspires you to play. Play all the Suhrs and FCS guitars you can and I promise you will find a great one in either brand.
     
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  11. Chuckracer

    Chuckracer Supporting Member

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    In any brand! I wonder how many Stratocasters there are out there in the world.
     
  12. CaliCaveMan

    CaliCaveMan Silver Supporting Member

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    I don't disagree with you. You can find a special guitar you're going to bond with if you play 50 of something and take a pick of what you personally liked. I know I can buy something from Suhr sight unseen and will have a high quality instrument without having to try a store full first. These days music stores with quality gear are in short supply and if I want something nice, I just don't want to go through the nightmare of searching for months. I just want to play man. I also appreciate knowing if I ever have an issue, it's going to get fixed for me because Suhr cares about their clients. I do the same thing with amps. I mostly have played Mesa Boogie over the years because I can always get things fixed close by. I've taken 3 amps to them for some small things over the years. I know Suhr will take care of my amps too!

    Anyways, enough of my beating the dead horse and I agree with you, I'm getting turned off to the comparisons as well. It's like ford vs Chevy or something. Whatever, I know what I like and others like what they like, all good.
     
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  13. KONTAKTMOI

    KONTAKTMOI Supporting Member

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    I got out of the " WANNA-BE" business a long time ago. You want the Fender sound? Get a Fender, there is no substitute, especially when you play CLEAN. If you play with high gain / buzz, fuzz, wuzz and metal.. buy a Squier or an Epiphone. After all, you do want calluses, right?. I have no Humbuckers / P90 guitars at all. I could get a better sound from a sweeping brush I am sure... but, that is just me, a 40 year beginner, with no skills, no time and lots of excuses as to why I am still a beginner - after all those years!.
     
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  14. ziehmrd

    ziehmrd Supporting Member

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    I have been checking out the 2020 FCS design guide and noticed they now offer stainless steel frets on master built guitars. ( med jumbo or jumbo)
     
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  15. LaceSensor1

    LaceSensor1 Supporting Member

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    The 2 suhr's I've played has thinner than fender C necks. Very similar to my warmoth modern compound radius neck. For what it's worth I prefer the regular fender C.

    With that said the SS frets and fret work on the Suhr (stock) and my warmoth (paid a tech) is a definite upgrade from fender american frets.

    I also prefer the fender american electronics over suhr but only by a small margin. Things like pickup selector switch feel, tone pot feel, etc...


    If fender would sell an American std with ss frets, compound radius neck, and regular c shaped neck I'd be all over buying one of these.
     
  16. Husky

    Husky Gold Supporting Member

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    Only by request and only Master Built, I believe it's a serious up charge too
     
  17. rhinocaster

    rhinocaster Supporting Member

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    I've owned far too many of each and I really enjoy the guitars from each brand. I actually took the time a few years ago based on the 3 Strats I owned at the time (Fender Clapton, G&L Legacy and Suhr Antique) to do a lengthy review that was broken down into three categories (build quality, playability and sound). The first part was a detailed post that received so little interest that I ended up just pulling it....it was surprising to me though given the number of these kinds of threads and the overstatements that I tend to read here when people like or dislike something...I mean, we used to have a person trash Suhr's work until he got banned for something and now we have someone step up to take his place. Some old thing.

    Fender has really had a kind of a renaissance in the past ten years or so and their guitars are very well made, pro grade instruments. The classic sounds are there, new sounds are there, finishes are nice, neck pockets are generally nice and snug, electronics work well, medium weights, fret work that will get the job done unless you prefer quite low action and the iconic headstock shapes.

    Suhr pretty much builds guitars as well as guitars can be made. This is especially true from a "factory" guitar. The praise of the build quality of Suhr guitars didn't happen by accident and even other builders tend to marvel at the consistency and quality coming from Suhr. The pickup designs are unique and often tweaked to do things that allow them to stand apart from other vintage designs. This can be exactly what you want or something that doesn't work for you based on what you're after.

    In my opinion Suhr makes a better guitar...but that doesn't keep me from spending the vast majority of my time playing Fender. I have a couple of Teles where it all comes together to give me what I want...so Fender tends to be my choice.
     
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  18. RayRay

    RayRay Gold Supporting Member

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    what this guy said.

    Ugh these vs threads.

    Play both, find the one you like. It ain’t hard.

    I have quite a few Suhrs now and two more incoming. Amazing instruments and a wonderful team behind them. Best customer service in the biz if you ever need anything (which I haven’t).

    Suhr is a true custom shop where even their “core” line is the same quality as their super-customized output.

    Suhr’s silent circuitry is one of the things that seals the deal for me when deciding between a Fender and a Strat. One of my incoming ones has it, and I’m soooo excited. Not to mention a combination of woods and options that’d be 2x the cost from fender.

    That and I just really love their guitars. Love playing them and owning them.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
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  19. TimH

    TimH Member

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    I’ve had some Custom Shop Fenders and Suhr Custom Antique Strats. They’re both awesome but different.

    Strictly speaking I think the Suhr feels more slick and plays better. It’s easier to find modern appointments like multi-radius fretboards and such. But I’d say that they also feel a bit more modern.

    CS Fender tends to feel more like an old guitar and looks like one too. Maybe it’s the specific body contours and headstock but I also think it’s the finish and the way they Relic them.

    Both are awesome...and personally I’ve found MJT type guitars are just as good so that’s mostly what I play.
     
  20. dreamspace

    dreamspace Supporting Member

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    Every Suhr I've tried or owned have blown away regular Fenders. I think it's more fair to compare CS Fender with Suhr - but even then, it really comes down to style.
     

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